I began writing this post with a very clinical mindset, but athletes should keep a journal for one very important reason. To have a blueprint of their life. How many times have you heard “i feel like i’m starting over” “I felt lost” “i don’t know what else I’m passionate about”? All the freaking time and it wasn’t until I pulled out the journals I had been keeping since middle school (some of which I burned out of immaturity lol) that I realized how great of a tool it is. I’m not talking about dear diary stuff, I’m talking about what the eff was going on in my mind from day to day. The things that made me happy, sad, angry, proud, worthy… recaps of events that happened in my life struggles and victories, the way i handled things, things i wished id said or done. The devestation of not going pro. The feeling of being lost
and rejected. There were so many rich moments in them. Among all that were goals, plans, people I’d met, conversations i’d had and what i wanted to come of them. I wrote the things that mattered to me, silly stuff, serious stuff, important stuff. Dreams, reasons for living, expressions of gratitude. Everything matters! So, think about athletes that are taught to be tough, show no weakness, handle things, keep their head in the game. How many of them spend time thinking about the long game? I’m not talking about what they are going to do for a living after sports. I mean the actual long game of life. When you have derived your value from a sport for so long and that is then not there anymore what the eff is your anchor?
For me, my journals were my anchor (aside from God and even there is a story there from the journals lol) I could look back at them and see how i had grown, see how i’d changed or stayed the same, see the patterns of my thoughts and behaviours, see how I handled things. The way you are now isn’t new to how you were. People do change, i believe that, but there are some things that are just… you.
From an emotional standpoint it has been wonderful for me. From a practical standpoint it’s the most inexpensive form of therapy you can do AND a way for you to not have to start from the drawing board. I created a guided journal specifically for athletes because I know what it feels like to be seen as a commodity. I ask questions about your life, your attitude, your dreams, and thought provoking stuff. As much as I can about the physical success of athletes, I care even more about them becoming awesome human beings.